Denise R. Weuve

Ink Damage and Other Permanent Stains

Archive for the tag “love”

Day 22 ~ Jericho Brown

Have you read New Testament?  No?!?  Well today’s Poet Spotlight was going to feature Jericho Brown, I was going to explain how he was a student of Claudia Rankine, and she recommended I read him.  How I am grateful she did, and I was going to praise him.  Then this morning after I wrote the praise and  lead you to the poems “Elegy”  and “Heart Condition” this was in my newsfeed from poetry foundation.  Read this instead, The Contract so much better than anything I could have said and you will fall in love with Jericho because of his love for poetry that will make you jealous that you have never said any of this to poetry, when it has done so much for you.  You can also read the aforementioned poems, because you will need more.

Or watch him here.

A Kind of Hurricane Press Awards

I am pleased to announce that two of my poems were finalist for the A Kind of Hurricane Press Editor’s Choice AwardsMy poem When to Tell Him That You Love Him received  Honorable Mention.  My thanks to Amy Huffman and April Salzano for the kindness.

 

Here is the revised version of the poem that placed, enjoy!

When to Tell Him That You Love Him

Wait
until he is in the kitchen
cleaning lunch dishes and you
are walking away.
Make sure the water runs heavy and loud.
 
Mouth the words
never daring to let the sound escape
as he leaves the table to pour
another cranberry vodka                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        
to keep you under.
 
Sign it distinctly
as he hunches over to check
the air in the tires
explaining for the 8th time
how you can do this yourself.
 
Etch it in the sky
when he is looking downstream
waiting for salmon to hook on his line
so he can show you the dinner
you make him throw back
 
Store it away
in an old shoebox,
place it in the paper bag he brought oranges
from Dansville in.  The one that said
“Don’t touch. Just hers.”
Screen Shot 2014-02-28 at 6.09.06 PM

Black Out Confessions

Today I received a letter, from someone who I am sure loves me, but just can’t say it, at least not sober.  And unfortunately this letter was written sober, I know because he signed it “sincerely,” the same way one signs a complaint letter to an airline for losing his luggage.

Sober he can say many things like, “You know how I feel about you”, “You mean the world to me”, “I don’t have to say it”, “I appreciate you so much”, and blah blah blah as if he is the only orator of these words.  As if he were the only King of love brand-name  knock-offs.  As if he is the only one to mask his heart with a thesaurus of phrases that can never be used against him in a court of law.

I am not the type of person that needs to be told she is loved.  I have grown accustom to those words coming along with other lies, like “I didn’t mean it”, “It’s not the same”, “It was a mistake” and “Just kidding”.  However  it is more insult than endearment when hearing it through a wall of empty beer glasses.

a night to forget

Drunk his words are meant to haunt and keep me from sleep.  When he is drunk he calls me a trickster, the girl that makes him fall in love, makes him forget that she can never have children.  Worse yet makes him forget the love, must be planned like careers, taxes, and time shares.  Drunk his hand finds mine, and there is always the moment when he swears that he means each word, and I only need to check his blood shot eyes to read the real map to his heart.  It is lined with apologies for never being the man he should be for me, and promises that the next time when  he says he loves me, it will be sober.  It is this “I love you” That matters.  The words that come before he has to explain it was only the black out talking.  Before he must explain that love comes in many forms, and his lips were confused about which form they were trying to create.

There’s always the argument that what was said drunk was not meant.  The alcohol was possessing its intakers tongue like the holy spirit.  A religious experience ending in a morning of sweat and chills that shift him back into sobriety.  Anything said was a black out confession, it had to be.    He has already promised love to someone else, sober.  She deserved it.  Marked his sincerity by the curvature of her child-bearing hips.  He can’t take back the love he garnered for her in sobriety and hand it over to some whore that only deserves intoxicated words of love that stumble into walls and trip over cracks in the sidewalks at 1:28am.

But keeps his whore near to remind him that medical studies show  alcohol is the only truth serum he will ever know.  Keep her near so his conscience can never rest.  Keep her near so she can never be free to hear the words he says from a sober man.

Day 1 – 30 Day Poetry Challenge

And so it begins.  Day one, rather easy.  Ask me how easy it all is on day ten.

If you are so inclined to follow my progress or lack there of please add my top secret thirty thirty site here.

Poem one about love and a caprese panini.  How could it not be?

 

caprese

The Disposable and Pit Bulls

Earlier today a friend mentioned an ill pit bull.  The owner, is beside herself, I am sure, as my assumption is that she loves her pit bull.  I assume many people love their animals, but it made me think about a pit bull that was not quite as loved.  Or maybe the owner loved his pit bull, Brooke, but the trade off was better.

Brooke was a beautiful blonde pit bull with a perfect stature, and strong as one can imagine from a well kept and often groomed pedigree.  She was also the happiest and kindest dog I have met.  I, of course, am not foolish enough to think she would not have defended her owner to her death, and anyone who had the audacity to harm him would have fallen into her perilous situation.  Even so, she would run down the hallway pulling her owner, Mike, along just to jump up on me and lick my face.  It was her goal in life to squash the stereotypes that plague her breed, correctly or not.

About the same time Brooke was bought by her owner, I got my cat, Batty.  Mike and I would discuss the joys of raising our “children”, and how we feared we were spoiling them (we were-she had a rhinestone encrusted pink collar, and batty had his name spelled out in rhinestones on his red collar).  We would let them play.  Yes, Brooke played with my huge black cat and never once did I worry about his safety as she was always gentle, even allowing Batty the dellusion of winning.

Five years ago, Mike informed me that he was moving from the condo as he girlfriend became pregnant and was now going to be his fiance. I was happy for him and Brooke, though I admit I would have missed her greetings far more than him.  Mike then continued that he would have no choice but to put Brooke down, the soon to be wife feared her child’s safety.  I was outraged, I wanted to take Brooke, save her from this fate, but there was no way I could, as at the time I was on dialysis.  Even if I had, the poor dog would have spent her whole life knowing that she had given her all to someone who just used her as a place holder.  She was there  only until he found better to love.  It must be the way an ex-wife feels when she sees her former husband marry the coed he was banging on the side while she  worked two jobs to get him through law school.

True the dismissal of loved ones comes to humans as often as animals, and as much as I would like to say I have not seen it or felt it, I can list far too many examples.  The adopted daughter a mother begged for forgotten when she learns she is pregnant two years later; an eldest son thrown out when he comes out for the father to shift his attention to the youngest; the lover who learns she was just filling the night as he  moved between the one he did love to the one he does love.. Yet this dogs betrayal stings a bit more painfully than others. Perhaps it’s that the dog, would never know she did nothing wrong.  Or that the dog’s willingness to give its life for her owner wasn’t enough.  Truly one of the only creatures that would have never turned on him.  Yes, he made the choice to follow his heart and go with his fiance and future child, but I often wonder if he regrets his decision.  Does he ever think back to Brooke when the wife is bitching about bills, and the child coloring on the walls.  Does he cringe inside when he remembers taking her to the vet and leading her into the back room, but never bringing her home.  Has anyone or anything every looked at him with such trust and unconditional love?  Will anything ever do so again?  Did he bother to keep her pink collar?

 

 

And now the cutest pit bull picture ever from tumblr

Picture 1

 

Stop Writing

Over two weeks ago a friend told me he did not like my post.  He did like reading what was going on in my life.  Strangely he is the same person that has given me license to write again, but stranger still was my reaction.  Not once did he tell me not to write, but I jump back to a seven-year old girl in pig tales being called into Mother Superior’s office (yes they still had those in the late 70s-early 80s) for writing.

I was not a bad child.  On the contrary, my mother will often tell you how she wished  I would have stayed that age and laments that I did not.  Sort of the way kitten owners become disillusioned when they now have a cat, as if they did not know it would happen.  So being called to the Principal/Mother Superior’s office was a devasting moment.  She sat me down because my second grade handwriting teacher was very disturbed with my constant lack of respect.  Each day we were given a sentence heavy with the letter of the day to write.  And we would write the same sentence 10 times or more.  It was droll.  It was awful.  It needed a spark, so I began creating my own sentences making sure they were weighed down with the letter of the day.  She had warned me against my dalliances, but this day R had come to Room 5 on the first floor of St.Anthony’s elementary school, what was I to do?  I wrote “Renea ran over to play Red Robin, but Robert refused to let her in.”  and that was not what I was supposed to write.  I at the time could not understand this need for conformity. But held my head down, apologized and redid the assignment.  I still say, give me a break lady I was seven and you got your Rs, but I digress.  I quickly learned that my writing caused trouble.

I learned that when my mother became angry with me  when she found stories I had been working on at 14 and threw them away while calling me names and telling me I was going to hell.  I was 14.  I was writing about how much I loved Wham! and desperately wanted to do the infamously gay George Michael.  You can see Hell really was the only place for me. . . .

I learned this when Edward begged to see my poems.  I showed him and then he disappeared telling me that I was too deep. They were too much to process, he needed time.  In the end, I was simply hard to deal with.

I learned this getting out of a car and being told I had a revisionist telling of history, by a man who rarely remembers his nights.

I learned this when the peacock pranced around in violent stomps with bleeding caws asking why anyone would care about my insignificance.  He certainly did not.

And then it occurs maybe they are all right.  Maybe.

But I don’t want any of them to be.  And he only said it hurt him to read these things, but he never said stop writing.  Yet I did.  And I don’t want to stop writing.  When I do my breathing becomes strained and my bitterness palpable.  The truth it is better to be uncomfortable because you read these things, then to live them.  It is far better to read these things, to write these things, then to keep them inside and watch the deterioration it will cause.

How To Heal A Broken Bone.

how can you help a friend realize their value? That is the topic for Optimist International Essay this year. I had this moment, upon hearing the topic, where I was winded by this amazing question. This question hits me hard because of a friend who has very recently done this for me. He is a lot of talk, often tells me I am important in his life, than does something that leaves minor stress fractures that heal in a day or so, and breaks that take longer, really need more than a splint to heal correctly. Then he is his own dichotomy, doing things that make me feel like, he loves me despite my numerous flaws.

I once broke my left arm when I was 10. There was a teenage girl that did tricks on the sidewalk outside the front of our apartment on Daisy Street. She jumped over a incline in the sidewalk created by tree roots. She landed gracefully and even spun on one leg, the other leg gracefully bent. I wanted to do the same, but was no fool, waited until no one was on the street. Timidly, at first, I practiced and hopped a few tries. All landed well. Then finally I decided it was time. I rolled down to the end of the block and turned. No more than 100 feet away I could see the rise in the sidewalk that seemed no more intimidating than a lump in a mattress. I set the wheels in motion and built speed for this graceful jump that would become epic and the talk of the neighborhood. Then I hit the inclined and rose in the air for what I was sure must have been 3 feet, but never ascended quite to my expectations. Like Icarus, my fall was brutal. When I knew the cement was waiting for my face I reached out and fell directly on my left arm. I heard the crack. The neighbors heard the screams. My mother took me to emergency, reminding me how I had been told not to try anything fancy.

I remember the tears, and the sterility of the exam room. Holding my arm, to find nothing was comforting and then the doctor explaining everything to my mother. “The bone broke and moved on top of itself. We are going to have to pull them apart and force them back in place. It’s going to be painful” I don’t recall my mother asking them to numb me or give me anything for pain, and I’m sure nothing was given. The doctor, an older white man, with perfect dirty blonde hair and quintessential white lab coat tried to explain to me so that I would understand, “It will feel like we are re-breaking the bone to put it back.” I’m sure my 10 year old face contorted with the expected pain magnifying in my imagination. He added, “It will be quick, and once it is done you will feel better.” And I can count him as one of the few men that did not lie to me. It was quick, it was painful, and than the pain dissipated. There were moments of tenderness, sudden shots of pain, and itching that made the failed landing a haunting memory. But it was better, and the arm still works.

image

In a dive bar off of Lakewood Boulevard my friend re-broke my bones, theoretically. As painful as it was (and it was) for the first time I saw my value.

I know what I’m not. It has been made clear to me, repeatedly. It is enough to say that I told him something that he had done that was devastating to me. He had forgot. I had not. I began layering broken bone over broken bone. Allowing others to break bones and then joining in by breaking my own because I really don’t know how to make the pain go away. I was sure that keeping it all in was the way to handle. I rationalized that there was nothing to be gained for either of us if he was told what had been said or what had been done. He didn’t remember and there can be no clearer assessment o value than knowing you are forgetable. That was exactly my worth. So I let that be enough. To make sure I did not tell him, I stopped drinking and spending as much time with him. This only helped to perpetrate the fact that I had no value, because If I did, he would noticed. He never did.

At a table nearest to the jukebox, away from the TV loosing the ability to view the Galaxy’s back to back championship, 9 months became too long. I heard myself talking but I didn’t really hear the words. I watched his face. Somehow got caught up in the lines that began forming over his brows. The shifting in his eyes. Deep down I told myself once he learned of the damage he caused he would simply dismiss it as unintended and explain what he did not mean. But in his eyes I saw pain, and it was because he was the one who had hurt me. He had done this without knowing it yet it hurt him as if he was aware of each breath the words took. each stroke that his hands made.

No one has ever made me feel like the hurt in my heart could be felt in theirs. No one has ever made me feel like I was so valuable that not having me in their life would matter.

Maybe the value I think I don’t have is only my warped perception. Maybe he has taught me I have value.
Maybe I can start acting like it.
Maybe now the bones can heal.

A Mother’s Love

I am under the contention that you can truly love someone and absolutely destroy it in the process. I have seen it with children and their pets, men and their women and sadly and most brutally (as far as I can tell), a mother and her child. I saw it with my sister and her daughter, I have seen it with friends and their children. It is vicious, unintentional and devastating.

Today my mother reminded me how ugly I am. I simply called to check in on her and was greeted with, “you know you have really let yourself go. You were looking so good last year, you lost weight, dressed better, and now. . .” she continued on with me only catching bits and pieces, as I was hoping this would end.

I’m not saying my mother is wrong, she is not. Since March I have been little more than walking wreckage, but this is how I grew up. To hate myself. To find the proof of my opinion’s accuracy in other people’s cruelty. Being taught that someone only loves you when they are unable to let you breathe makes you stop breathing. Being taught that what you have is theirs and not yours makes you the victim in every relationship.

One year I was working in the mortgage business as an operations manager and doing quite well. This was long ago when Forrest Gump came out on VHS (that’s right, that long ago). My mother was enamored with that movie. Just before mother’s day there was the release of the movie and all the tie-ins, books, shirts, candy (a box of chocolate, of course). I bought everything for her spent around $200. A good portion of money. In my excitement to please her, and make her happy I gave them all to her. She was very happy. Still has the movie, in its VHS form. Then the following week it was mother’s day, and I was nearly broke until my next paycheck. So I bought a cake with yellow roses (her favorite), brought flowers and a card placing $20 in it. It was all I could do. She was all smiles when I entered the house and went into her bedroom. She opened the card, and became angry. In her grand gesture she looked at me and told me if that was all I thought she was worth as a mother she didn’t want it and threw the $20 at me. And so the money floated and fell on her bed. Floated as far as $20 will float in a dead air.

I was broken. I was an adult, made no difference. Logically I realized that I was a great daughter and had done far more than most children would. Not just this day but every day. It did not matter, I had let her down because of money, a gift, a lack of grand gesture.

So now I love with what I can do for you, expecting nothing in return, not even a kind word. I love with how much of me I can give, and when what I offer is not what is wanted I destroy the me I tried to give.

The pathetic part of this, is I am so aware of what I have become in all of this, and yet I struggle and fail to release from it all. When I think I have, I fall back down.

My mother was right, I am ugly and getting uglier all the time. Created that way from the inside out.

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